A Whole Child Education is one of the guiding principles at St. Andrew's. Students benefit from programs like Mindfulness, Social Emotional Learning, Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging, and so many more!
St. Andrew’s Episcopal School is committed to building a beloved community of learning that embraces diversity, champions justice, and honors the dignity of every human being.
We are informed and guided by our deep commitment to our Episcopal identity. That identity calls us to live our baptismal covenant which asks us to love our neighbors as ourselves and to strive for justice and peace among all people respecting the dignity of every human being.
Our wonderful diversity—race, gender, gender identity, religion, sexual orientation, socio-economic status, family structure, ability, and ethnicity— is what makes us a beloved community.
Honoring the culture and heritage of our own community and the community at large is one of the many ways that we live into our diversity mission statement. Below is a sampling of some of our community events; our monthly division-specific newsletter will inform you of these during the school year.
Kindergarten: The focus in Kindergarten is in the Justice Domain. A learning target for the week might be to know about other people and how our lives and experiences are the same and different. Books are great resources to spur conversations, we have read Bodies are Cool, Don’t Touch My Hair!, and We Are Water Protectors, among many others.
First Grade: The focus in First Grade is in the Identity Domain. A learning target for the week might be that groups of people believe different things and live their daily lives in different ways. A few books that have been read are Except When They Don’t and Julián is a Mermaid.
Second Grade: The focus in Second Grade is in the Diversity Domain. A learning target for the week might be to develop language and knowledge to accurately and respectfully describe how people (including themselves) are both similar to and different from each other and others in their identity groups. In prior years, we might have listened to different types of music such as Vera Hall’s "Trouble So Hard" or Mahalia Jackson’s "Roll, Jordan, Roll", and asked students questions regarding their identities.
Third Grade: The focus in Third Grade is in the Justice Domain. A learning target for the week might be that they will be empowered to speak up and take action against injustice, prejudice, and the degradation of any people. In previous lessons, students have taken the Harvard Implicit Bias Test to analyze themselves on unconscious bias.
4th Grade: The focus in Fourth Grade is on Activism and Social Justice. A learning target for the week might be recognizing and giving examples of the tensions between the wants and needs of individuals and groups, and concepts such as fairness, equity, and justice.
5th Grade: Fifth grade experimented in becoming a sustainability lab and hub for diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging. They embarked on a year-long journey through a project called IMPACT.
6th - 8th Grade: Through advisory, our Middle School students engage in monthly programming around diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging. For example, a topic explored might be Combating Antisemitism. The 6th graders might discuss different forms of antisemitism, 7th graders might engage in role-playing to think through recent incidents of antisemitism, and 8th graders might read through recent incidents and statistics of antisemitism and discuss ways that they can make a positive impact on their own community.
9th Grade: Courageous Conversation training (with ongoing practice in the Freshman Seminar class)
10th & 11th Grade English: Examples of books that make up the SAS canon include, but are not limited to, Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe, The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison, God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy, One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel García Márquez, and Klara and the Sun by Kazuo Ishiguro.
11th Grade Data Project: Examples of investigated topics include everything from The Rodney King Trial to The Evolution of Birth Control; from The Effects of Desegregation in Texas to The Protests of the Miss America Beauty Pageant by Women of Color.
12th Grade Senior Project: Previous examples of senior projects with a DEIB theme include, but are not limited to, Project DOC (Diversity of Campus); The Young Black Male Mental State: An Interview Series; Ramadan: A children’s book written and illustrated for youth at the Islamic Center of Lake Travis; and Faith Through A Lens: Using photography to capture the overlaps and variances of multiple belief systems.
This group, formerly known as FOCUS, was started in 2015 to serve as a place for members of the school community to connect over a common goal; namely, to thoughtfully engage in the work of diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging (DEIB). If you are a parent or guardian who believes that the holistic development of your child should involve an intentional ‘focus’ on the work of DEIB and that learning based on academics, art, athletics, and service alone do not a whole child make, then we invite you to reach out to us so that you can find out how to get involved.
Several school-sponsored PIC events and receptions take place each year, but more frequent gatherings initiated by parents are encouraged as well. Additionally, there are several DEIB education groups on campus that are doing great work to help actualize the DEIB mission. Whether institutional or grassroots, planned or organic, PIC is a place for anyone who considers scholarship, inquiry, and active participation related to cultural literacy as vital to the health of St. Andrew’s Episcopal School. We look forward to hearing from you soon!
• Austin Interfaith • Annual Black Composers Concert • El Buen Samaritano • Austin Peace Academy
• Asian American Resource Center • Refugee Services of Texas
Past Speakers and Conferences Attended by Faculty
Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee
Dr. Ali Michael
NAIS Diversity Leadership Conference
NAIS People of Color Conference
NAIS Student Diversity Conference
Exeter Diversity Institute
National Diversity Practitioners Institute, UT - CSRD/ Center for Study of Race and Democracy
Affinity Group Programming
An affinity group is a group of people who share something in common. Students on the soccer team are a type of affinity group. Our counselors typically meet in lunch groups with new students, this is another type of affinity group. At St. Andrew's we have several types of affinity groups.
We are so proud of all of our affinity group offerings. Some of these groups meet monthly and some meet once a year based on the organizer. Is there a group that you’d like to see us offer or is there a group that you’d like to be the point person of? Please email Priya or Kendall.
CIA (Cultural Inclusivity Cabinet) is a group in the Middle School that provides a space to discuss what we are facing in our current climate and how we can bring these concepts into our school community from a student-based perspective in awareness, education, understanding, and acceptance.
Gay/Straight Alliance and Spectrum is for all Middle and Upper School students who are interested in advancing inclusivity within the LGBTQIA+ community. This group is an alliance group so any identity is welcome.
Neurodiverse Families Affinity and Allies Group is for all families who are interested in advancing inclusivity within our community members who have learning differences. This group is an alliance group so any identity is welcome.
Students of Color Group (Fusion in Lower School) is for any student of color (Asian, Asian Pacific Islander, Black, Latinx/Hispanic, Middle Eastern American, Indigenous, biracial and multiracial heritage)
A white ally accepts the limits of her/his/their knowledge about other people’s experiences but doesn't use that as a reason not to think or act. A white ally does not remain silent but challenges racism as it comes up daily, but also seeks to deconstruct it institutionally and live in a way that challenges systemic oppression, at the risk of experiencing some of that oppression. Being a white ally entails building relationships with both people of color, and also with white people in order to challenge them in their thinking about race. White allies don’t have it all figured out, but are committed to non-complacency.
A group that provides an opportunity for people to explore, unpack, and engage in conversation on the various interpersonal dynamics, beliefs, and thoughts that shape our racialized experiences as members of a community.
A social construct that artificially divides people into distinct groups based on characteristics such as physical appearance, ancestral heritage, cultural affiliation, cultural history, ethnic classification, and the political needs of a society at a given period of time.
An umbrella term for people who identify as neither female nor male and/or as neither a man nor as a woman. Transgender is not a sexual orientation; transgender people may have any sexual orientation.
Transgender people are those whose psychological self ("gender identity" – one’s internal experience of their gender) differs from the physical sex with which they were born (“biological sex” - one’s body -genitals, chromosomes, etc.). Often, society conflates sex and gender, viewing them as the same thing. However, gender and sex are not the same thing.
Affinity Group Reflections
List of 3 items.
of students self-identify as racially diverse
Over $2.1 million
awarded in financial aid to 135 students
religious affiliations; over 20% are Episcopalian
Meet the Team
List of 2 members.
Co-Director of DEIB (Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Belonging)
Co-Director of DEIB (Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Belonging)